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Can The Humanities Be Saved?

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This show originally aired on July 2nd, 2013. When considering what show we wanted to re-run, we found this recent article from the New York Times, As Interest Fades in the Humanities, Colleges Worry. The debate is still being discussed and on this show, it gets heated!

If you want to think about the way our diminished interest in the humanities amounts to playing with fire, consider the present moment, which includes wind-driven deadly wildfires in Arizona and a tornado in Windsor and the recurrent suggestion that this is "the new normal."

The new normal is incredibly dangerous and getting worse. We have enormous amounts of scientific information that explains why some of this is happening, and what we should do to keep it from getting worse. But as a planet and a nation, we're not doing much. Why? 

Does anyone seriously doubt the missing piece lies in the humanities? A society that was constantly engaged in thought and debate about the meaning of life would never be so complacent. A people capable of attaching significance to lives lived in the future wouldn't sit on its hands. Maybe we're getting rid of the humanities because it's scary to think and easier not to.

You can join the conversation. E-mail colin@wnpr.org or Tweet us @wnprcolin.

Chion Wolf is the host of Audacious with Chion Wolf on Connecticut Public, featuring conversations with people who have uncommon or misunderstood experiences, conditions, or professions.

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